Set forth below is the text of a comment that I recently posted to another blog entry at this site:
When people like this, they see two things. First, they know you are not credible because what you call “buy and hold” has been very successful and is not how your portray it. Secondly, they see you as a crackpot when you throw around threats of prison. It makes you come off like a little child having silly revenge fantasies.
People do not respond well to those sorts of statements, Anonymous. You don’t have to convince me of this. I have seen the reality play out before my eyes on thousands of occasions.
Did you see the demonstrations that were held by hundreds of students at Penn State when the truth about Joe Paterno came out? Those students LOVE Joe Paterno. And not without reason. He is one of the greatest coaches who ever lived. The bad things he did do not cancel out his many genuine accomplishments.
Do you think that people helped Paterno by covering up what was going on around him for so many years? There was a woman who worked at Penn State who asked that action be taken and she was fired for her trouble. That solved the problem TEMPORARILY. But of course in the long term it made it worse.
That woman was the true Joe Paterno fan, in my assessment. She tried to bring a quick end to something that was in the process of destroying his reputation. I am to Jack Bogle what that woman was to Joe Paterno. I love the guy. That’s why I speak up when I see financial fraud being practiced at a board with his name on it.
It takes more guts to speak up than it takes to be a yes man. Another way of saying it is to say that it takes more love to speak up than it does to be a yes man. I love Jack Bogle more than you do. You talk the talk. I walk the walk.
That woman was fired. People didn’t like what she said. But she has a clear conscience today. She is able to look at the woman in the mirror and feel good about what she sees.
I get it that telling the truth about how stock investing works is not the popular thing to do today, when we are priced for a 65 percent price crash sometime over the next year or two or three. The reality is that we are going to need someone to put the pieces together after that crash and to get the job done that person is going to need a reputation for integrity. I think it would be feel to say that the “experts” who failed to speak out about you Goons when they learned what you are up to will not be viewed as possessing the personal integrity needed to help us dig out of the hole that the Buy-and-Holders put us in. I will.
Personal integrity matters, Anonymous. It matters a lot. I never went to Investing School. I never managed a big mutual fund. But I was the first person to work up the courage to “cross” John Greaney by posting honestly on safe withdrawal rates. And I was the first person to call out Mel Lindauer on his b.s. abusive posting tactics at the Bogleheads Forum. And that makes me ten times the investing expert that Jack Bogle or Bill Bernstein or Larry Swedroe or Scott Burns can ever again claim to be now that they have failed to take prompt action re these matters.
We all are presented opportunities to act or not act. I acted. They did not. That one is now written in the books and it obviously can never be unwritten.
A new page of the book is being written today. Jack or Bill or Larry or Scott can elect to act today. If one of them does, I will be writing it up at my blog tomorrow. I will be praising that person to the skies. It will make me happy to do so once it becomes possible to do so HONESTLY.
I cannot do that today, can I? Whose fault is that? I have figured out how to get my words posted to the internet. Does Jack lack that ability? Jack Bogle hasn’t called Mel Linduaer out on his b.s. abusive posting tactics because he fears what Linduaer will do to him if he does so. That’s the most charitable explanation of Jack’s behavior that any of his friends can possibly put forward on his behalf. That reality will change when my good friend Jack works up the courage to take the steps needed to make it change. I can try to steer him in the right direction. I cannot force him to take the steps recommended.
An investing expert who is afraid to post honestly re the numbers that millions of people have used to plan their retirements is a piss-poor investing expert. People need to know that Jack Bogle is today a piss-poor investing expert. It’s a reality that affects every one of us suffering the effects of today’s economic crisis and worrying over the worsening of that economic crisis that we will experience when the next price crash sends us all down deeper into the Buy-and-Hold darkness.
My best and warmest wishes to you (and to my good friend Jack).